L'Amalthée | Brasserie Lebbe

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54 Ratings

Brewed by:
Brasserie Lebbe

Style: Bière de Garde

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by emerge077 on 05-06-2007

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 54 |  Reviews: 31
Reviews by MattSweatshirt:
Photo of MattSweatshirt
3.75/5  rDev -9%

More User Reviews:
Photo of rhoadsrage
4.13/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

(Served in a tulip glass) bottled 5/12/10
A- This beer has a hazy deep orange body with a lumpy beige head that last for the full beer. There are strands of tiny carbonation that trail up the glass. This beer gets hazier with each pour.
S- The rich caramel aroma has a slight sweetness to it and a light sulfury note with some yeasty qualities. As the beer opens up the sulfury note turns into more of a spice note and there is a soft apple cider note in the finish.
T- The deep woody light caramel note finishes with a mellow bitter bite that blends and lingers with caramel flavors. As the beer warms the caramel takes on a bit more of a cider quality. M- This beer has a medium mouthfeel that is creamy from the thick head and a slight fizz texture in the finish.
D- This beer reminds me more of a scotch ale than a saison with all its malty caramel flavor, but it has a nice depth without becoming to cider and it is a great beer to quaft.

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Photo of emerge077
4.03/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Green 750mL bottle, dark green label with gold banners displaying script text, painting of a goat, wheat, and hop cones. Bottle states 6% abv, BB: 12/10/2008

Pours a hazy amber w/suspended particles. Two fingers of off-white crackling foam. Aroma of earthy aged hops and malt.

Notes of pear, dusty hay, earthy yeast, with a malty backbone. A rustic farmhouse character. Wheaty. Chalky, dry herbal finish with traces of effervescent mineral water. Not as spicy as Belgian saisons.

Body is medium, delicate, with good carbonation. No problems finishing the bottle. This would be great paired with some cheeses, or a meal outdoors in the sun.

Notes from importer: Ingredients include home-grown barley, pure Pyrenee Mountain spring water, organic yeast and hops from Germany, and a touch of sugar and yeast added at bottling time. The conditioned beer evolves and develops over the course of two years following its bottling.

Imported by Charles Neal Selections, Richmond, CA.
Purchased at House of Glunz, Chicago, IL.

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Photo of imbibehour
4.48/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the bottle into a tulip glass. Plastic sealed rim bottle cap, neato, a nice pop and gas when released. Best consumed before June 6th 2017.

Deep golden amber, quite clear but fills with a bit of mild cloud and lots of great carbonation all around. Forms a wonderful but simple one finger controlled bleaching bright creamy white head, that always stays up and populated. Reams of side carbonation bubbles, and a great classic roaring middle column of fire in the center..

Real fascinating aroma. Deep minty herbs, with some dry earth and huge floral tones. Chewy body with a sage and mint like quality, possible wheat? Density. Inviting and thick with still a dry punch that airs through the nostrils. Excellent.

What a fascinating beer on the palate. Chewy body with brett like hotness at first, that comes back later. Minty front with a real nice herbal sweeetness comes with a chewy quality. Honey tones explode with soft chewy mint and beeswax candles on the aftertaste. A real excellent malt character matching with honey and effervescence sort of like a braggot brut of some creation. Mild nutty tannic teeth coating qualities, slightly wet but with still an excellent coating slick palate.

Real neat brew, excellent quality and very special. Would love to have this again someday, and hope to.

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Photo of LiquidAmber
4.06/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a Gulden Draak tulip. Gusher! Lost about 1/5 of the bottle on opening, but managed to start pouring before total loss. Pours a light to medium golden amber with a three finger white head with great retention and pillowy lacing. Big skunkiness, grain and biscuit on opening. Aroma in the glass is similar, biscuit and sweet bready malt, apple juice, mild citrus, honey and sadly, skunk. Flavor is biscuity, slightly toasted malt, apple and pear juice, orange citrus, coarse bread, nice woody and rustic graininess. Finishes with light noble hop bitterness and a bit more of the skunk, although it is not as noticeable as in the aroma and may fit in with the other rustic flavors. Medium bodied with quite active carbonation. After the gusher of opening, I was pleased to find no evidence of the flavor going off, on the contrary, this was a very nicely balanced, flavorful ale that was similar to eating a top notch notch freshly ground, whole grain bread.Really everything I could hope for in a Biere de garde without any of the tartness that these sometimes have. I liked this very much. Except for the loss from opening, the $10 price for this 750ml is quite a bargain for an imported, quality French ale. I enjoyed this more than my score indicates, because the aroma really was badly skunked, probably due to the green bottle. This had a drink by date of 2016 and I certainly would not store it in this bottle for any length of time. I hope they reconsider their packaging, because this is a worthy product.

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Photo of GbVDave
4.5/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 750ml bottle into a Saison Dupont tumbler.

Best before 20/07/09

A: This has an awesome hazy orange hue to it before it even leaves the bottle. After the pour, it retains the hazy orange coloring with an incredibly creamy (almost meringue-like) three finger head that leaves sheets of sticky lace in the glass. Very effervescent body, as well.

S: Wonderful aromas of pear, mild citrus, dusty attic, grain, crackers, with a touch of candi sugar and grape. I also thought I detected a bit of noble hops in the nose.

T: Whoo boy! Citrus (lemon/orange), pear, sweet apple, crackers and or bread crust, hay bale, earthy spice, wet field grass, dingy old barn, a pinch of hops, and toasted malt.

M: Starts big and juicy and then takes a turn towards the dry side as the finish progreses. A perfectly refreshing Saison!

D: So balanced and delicious. Supposedly this guy only bottles 600 bottles (50 cases!) of this stuff a month. I feel honored and privledged to have been able to enjoy this!

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Photo of ojiikun
4.42/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured from a very simple 750ml bottle, no barcode, no date, no back label. Capped with a vacuum cap, it popped quite nicely.

Body is very hazy but not at all chunky dark amber. Reddish in the center with edges of pure orange. Head is beautifully full and clean white. Not much lace, though.

Smell is candied hops, red pepper, sparkling mineral water, fresh yeast, orange peel. Strong on the hops, lots of backing malts that smell light.

Taste is amazingly restrained given the firm smell. More hops, sweet pear, bready and darker malts, more of the simple, fresh yeast.

The mots remarkable thing here is how darn smooth the body is. Hoppy and distinct, but almost no alphas at all! This combined with the absolute top-notch carbonation makes this a joy to swill in the mouth and really chew on. Drinkable as any I've ever had.

For less than ten dollars, this is an absolute find! A true-to form farmhouse ale with a bit more kick than most in the style, and a pleasing surprise of yeast that's more modern than most. Highly recommended.

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Photo of sjccmd
4.34/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Crisp graham cracker, fresh spicy herbal hops in the aroma. Just slightly fruity. Hints of dill and grass. Somewhat earthy. Hay as well. Very rustic aroma. Malt dominates the aroma.

Pours golden hazy yellow/orange with an off-white head great retention and lacing. Heavily carbonated.

Sweet bready malts upfront with pear and apple. The light dill from the aroma is still present on the palate. Becomes more herbaceous and spicy with each sip. Graham cracker pilsner malt is present throughout, but complex spicy, herbal flavors mingle in.

Medium bodied with high carbonation. Mostly dry finish with lingering malt.

So unique, unlike any beer I've had. The BJCP description of Biere de Garde is fairly vague. While this is not like any other Biere de Garde I've had, it still fits within the description...

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Photo of Beerzebub
4.45/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Got at Blackwell's in San Francisco. Best Before date: 06/04/2008.

Light amber color, clear until the last glass. An inch of cream colored head. Attractive blobs and tendrils of lace.

Smells strange and wonderful. Dry biscuit, light caramel, dry leaves, a bit of nail polish remover. Some hops, like grass/herbs/hay. Cloves, cedar, and cinnamon emerge as it warms, making for quite an exotic aroma.

Tastes dry, but not as totally dry as it smells. Nice balance of biscuity, caramelly (light, something like Lyle's Golden Syrup) malt with explicit but nicely controlled hop bitterness and flavor - grass, leaves, hay, and an herbal note like thyme. Solvent, clove, cedar and cinnamon. A touch of astringency. Extremely balanced and enjoyable, very much a farmhouse ale. This seems completely like a homebrew, and one made for everyday drinking, yet elegant and complex. Long dry finish, cedar and cloves. Outstanding.

Good mouthfeel. Can be too fizzy, but several swirls smooth it out. Drinkable in the extreme, and just gets better as it warms.

A great and original beer from a Belgian goat farmer in Southwestern France. I'm not worthy!

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Photo of ejquin
4.41/5  rDev +7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: About as nice a saison look as you can find. Nice cloudy ornage with thick white head that laces nicely.

S: I get some fruit, a nice candied sugar sweetness, malt, bready yeast.

T: Very well blanced. Starts with pear quickly fading to biscuit and a nice sweetness. Alcohol and hops linger in finish but everything perfectly balanced.

M: I thought this beer was perfectly carbonated with a smooth semi-heavy mouth feel.

Ovr: The story behind this beer was too good to miss. A Belgian goat farmer who makes cheese and produces a very liited amount of saison on the side. This is one of the best examples of the style I've had to date. Up there with Saison Dupont for me, and I actually think this beer was slightly better balanced. Remarkable.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
4.01/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

man i have waited and wanted to drink this beer for such a long time now. a dream finally realized. the thing is, we dont see a lot of the sexiest imports in colorado, and after a whole host of mediocre india pales, reds, and brett beers that seem to dominate our local market, all i want is a genuine classic, green bottle and all. this is raw and lively and poured from an affordable but literally ancient green bottle that has more dust than an old ladys skateboard, and even the label looks like its been wet, dry, wet, dry, wet, and dry again, almost a sad bottle, but a bomb beer, and i may never even know what a fresh one tastes like. still, even with the oxidation, the obvious but flattering green bottle stink, and the over conditioned nature of the thing, i somehow still get fresh malts, wheaty and earthy and complex and different, and i also get some aged hop quality, like a lambic without the sour or the wood, but that mowed lawn and baled hay thing, farmy without being yeasty, super distinct and likable that way. skunk and stale are strong here, but the beer remains brilliant, heritage vibe, stuff that seems to me ancient, timeless, and special, even if its quality however many years and miles later seems a tad bit compromised. i am still a fan, and when i taste this fresh someday, the saison world may end. i mean it. i feel part of something bigger than myself with this one, like a marine. a liquid marine...

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Photo of popery
4.23/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Best when consumed before 27/07/14. Poured into a La Chouffe glass. I'm fairly confident that this is the first beer that I've tried from Southern France. I don't know if it's a proper saison or biere de garde, for that matter. Whatever that means. The brewery reportedly uses a German yeast strain - the whole backstory is actually quite interesting (organic farmer, who mostly makes goat cheese, decided to make an organic beer with his own barley).

The beer pours a warm shade of orange. It's quite cloudy, though you can just barely see through the glass at points. The head is a pale beige, rocky and huge. Excellent retention and lacing. There's obviously some nice protein content. Big clumps of bubbles stick to the glass even on the second pour, and the head lasts for ages.

Aroma is light and subtle. I'm picking up pears, pineapples, bright grain, grassy hops, minerals and a dusty farmhouse character. It's all quite gentle, and the sweet barley flavors come through the most. You can smell the grain quality. There's a very light apricot, raisin tone, but it's delicate and works very well with the beer.

The taste has a wonderfully pleasant barley flavor. It's soft and sweet and fruity. Apples, pears, peaches, grapes, apricots, all come to mind, but it's not the sort of thing that hits you over the head. Delightfully and authentically rustic. Fresh and refreshing. The finish adds in some grassy, floral hops and a touch of mineral dryness. Light bitterness coats the mouth after the beer is gone.

The mouthfeel is probably my favorite part. This is a gentle but creamy and full beer. I'd almost guess that it used some other grain, but it's not quite akin to the mouthfeel of anything in particular. This beer has its own unique feel.

Very interesting beer. And I'm pleased to have finally decided to pick up a bottle. This beer would pair wonderfully with food. It probably would shine most with cheeses, particular its farm mate, goat cheese, but it would just make for a great all-purpose table beer, really. Great light barley flavor. Nothing too strong or rough on the palate. It's a very pleasant beer with solid flavor.

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Photo of oberon
3.97/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

To me this is much more of a Bier De Garde than a Saison but hey who am I?Best by 11/29/2016.Poured into a tulip glass a slightly hazed honey tinged medium golden with a great looking blooming white head that leaves two big broken rings of lace as it settles into a frothy mass.Not Belgian farmhouse at all in the nose,again more Biere de Garde.Honey malts along with overripe pineapple and a tinge of iron along with lightly toasted bready malt,alot of pilsner malt going on.Flavors of bread dough and some honey,some mineral underneath and some leafy hops in the finish.A great food friendly beer and very good in warm weather.

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Photo of tastybeer
3.93/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Glowing golden orange with tiny suspended bits around the bottom of the glass. Large foamy peach tinted off white head that recedes to a ring and lumpy patch at the center of the glass. Scattered lace remains... Aroma is dank with some kind of fruitiness that I can't specifically place... Pear, the tart part of under ripe peaches, something slightly minty, wine-like, wild flowers, green grapes, mystery berries, hibiscus, and super funky miscellaneous farm aromas. A very unusual beer.....I've never had anything quite like it. Taste is very soft around its crazy edges. Soapy floral, some kind of spicy zest, dried mangos, sage, herbal earthiness, apple, pitted fruits, all soft and fluffy... After each sip there's a lingering spicy, chalky smackiness. Mouthfeel is also fluffy... Almost creamy with very fine carbonation bubbles.

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Photo of augustgarage
4.02/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a capped 750mL bottle into a Unibroue tulip. Best before Feb. 2015.

Agitated goldenrold body with an ever-growing crennelation of papaya whip foam. Rocky yet mousse-like lacing climbs out of the glass. Perpetual retention.

Sweet and spicy aroma with white pepper, coriander, and orange peel in the mix along with a hint of lavender and cardamom. Elegant yet rustic.

Grain-centered palate entry accompanied by a light hoppy kick which fades to spices, then winter fruit (pears?), then a grassy finish with another floral flourish. Dry and a touch toasty overall (guessing a decent quantity of Vienna malt was used?). Easy-going mustiness/funk peeks out once in a while.

Creamy, medium-light bodied with plenty of carbonation.

A tasty farmhouse ale - best paired with a simple platter of cheese/fruits/fish/olives/etc.

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Photo of Beernoobie
4.48/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of whatthewhat
3.5/5  rDev -15%

Photo of ckornmannn
4.45/5  rDev +8%
look: 3 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Yellow color, hazy. Very dense, lacy head of foam, especially given the effervescent nature of the beer. Biscuit and herbal aromas. Grassy, herbal, hop characteristics remind me of a pilsner. A very unique and delicious beer. I'll be looking for more of it.

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Photo of GRG1313
4.25/5  rDev +3.2%

Photo of wedge
3.76/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75


Cloudy yellow bodied liquid under an expansive head of lumpy foam that drops to a milkshake covering. Very interesting aromas of pear juice, lavender, and mint. Some faint oxidation with a deep sniff and a little biscuit comes out when it warms up. Flavor is slightly less odd due to increased pale malt sweetness which rounds things out. Still, that minty, medicinal quality remains and throws me for a bit of a loop. Pear sweetness, apples, clove, grapes, flowers, and some lingering herbalness. Medium-light, fluffy body that dries out in the finish. Totally wacky stuff. I have a feeling there's a lot of variation between batches.

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Photo of Etan
3.6/5  rDev -12.6%

750ml into a teku.

A: Pours a muddy caramel color with a thick off-white head.

S: Aroma is browned apples, caramel, plum.

T: Taste brings some grainy maltiness, dry yeast, brown bread, bit of clove, mild astringent spiciness on the end.

M: Medium-bodied with zingy carb.

O: Interesting, but a bit too malty and oxidized to be really great.

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Photo of jibbyvonjibb
4/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

bought @ Ledgers, Berkeley CA
bottle says, "Best if consumed before 01/10/10".

A: Copper color. Cloudy. Mouse-like head.
S: Apple-y fruitiness. Honey. Caramel sweetness. Some bubblegum, but not in a bad way. Restrained funk. Any hops that existed initially is long gone.
T: Tart and sweet fruit upfront. Apples and pears are the main fruit flavors. Slight caramel maltiness. Some earthy, astringent raw husk flavor. No hops detected. Maybe would have liked some bitterness to balance the sweetness.
M: Medium body. Medium carbonation.
O: If I was asked to, I would classify this as a Biere de Garde than a Saison because it is more malt driven flavors than yeast driven. But then again, it is a very aged bottle. Still a very pleasurable beer to drink.

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Photo of fehrminator
4.25/5  rDev +3.2%

Photo of safaricook
4.2/5  rDev +1.9%

I found this per accident in a little shop high up in the Pyrenees in South France. It is a great rustic farmhouse ale with a Belgium nose and a Biere de Garde toasted malt backbone. Nuff said, let's enjoy this!

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Photo of AgentZero
3.87/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Recommended to us at Map Room, after we ordered Juliet and Fantome' Saison and were told they were out of both.

A - Cloudy orangish yellow color, decent white head, decent retention.

S - Very grassy, just like a saison, slighty bready , little bit of citrus and lemon, but nothing that stood out a ton. Slighty, non-sweet grape and a hint of pear in there.

T - Solid take on the style. Grassy tasting, you get the pear and grape influence that starts but ends in a hint as it never gets quite sweet. Lemony citrus is also there, but doesn't have much bite and is just another note in the overriding grass of the taste.

M - Lightly bodied, decently carbonated, finishes a bit dry.

D - Considering the style, it's not super drinkable, but it's not like it's hard to do.

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L'Amalthée from Brasserie Lebbe
Beer rating: 4.12 out of 5 with 54 ratings
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